Eric Van Lustbader
Forge, Aug 2008, $25.95
One month before moderate Republican Edward Carson is to be sworn in as the president of the US, his nineteent years old daughter Alli Carson is kidnapped in spite of Secret Service agents. ATF agent Jack McClure leads the hunt to rescue Alli; whom he knows as his late daughter Emma’s boarding-school roommate.
Those who abducted Alli are brainwashing her to do a terrorist deed at the inauguration ceremony. Meanwhile as Jack struggles with making progress in his investigation, the current POTUS invoking God like he always does declares a holy war against the First American Secular Revivalists and the E-Two terrorists, who he blames.
Jack is an interesting hero as he struggles to overcome dyslexia and his search for the abducted Alli turns FIRST DAUGHTER into a strong thriller. However, the current President’s invoking God’s wrath as a motive to declare a new war on terrorism seems over the top even if this is a hyperbole of the claims of Mr. Bush and some of his more fundamental supporters. Thus when the story line focuses on Jack and Alli it is a strong exhilarating thriller; when POTUS is featured it turns inanely satirical. Still readers will enjoy this exciting tale.